(L-R) Nonito "Filipino Flash" Donaire and Vic "Raging Bull" Darchinyan weigh in
(Donaire 125.25, Darchinyan 125.75 lbs)
-Photo © Chris Farina / Top Rank-
Article by Bill Tibbs, MaxBoxing
Tonight, Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire will tangle with Vic “Raging Bull” Darchinyan as part of a tripleheader, live on HBO, from Corpus Christi, Texas. HBO might consider issuing a bomb threat before this rematch as it should be a can’t-miss fight on a card including Roman Martinez vs. Miguel Angel Garcia for the World Boxing Organization (WBO) super featherweight belt and Demetrius Andrade and Vanes Martirosyan doing battle for the vacant WBO super welterweight belt.
Donaire is looking to get back in the win column after suffering a 12-round schooling at the hands of celebrated former amateur, undefeated World Boxing Association (WBA) and WBO world super bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux in his last fight in April. Darchinyan will look to avenge his loss to Donaire (the first of his career), going back six years.
The July 2007 tussle in Bridgeport, Connecticut saw Donaire win his first world titles, relieving Darchinyan of the WBO and International Boxing Organization (IBO) flyweight world titles he was defending for the seventh time.
In Donaire, 31-2 (20), you have a massively popular, power-punching, boxer-puncher. He had only suffered one loss, going back a dozen years, before meeting difficult, southpaw boxer Rigondeaux in his last fight. Since turning pro in February of 2001, he has filled his trophy case with the International Boxing Federation (IBF) and WBO flyweight titles, the WBA interim super flyweight title, the World Boxing Council (WBC) and WBO bantamweight titles, and the WBO and IBF super bantamweight titles. Since beating Darchinyan to capture the IBF and IBO flyweight titles, his 13 fight (12-1) title run includes nine knockouts, many of the highlight reel variety, over names like Jorge Arce and Fernando Montiel. In his last bout against undefeated Guillermo Rigondeaux, he failed to capture his opponent’s WBA super bantamweight title as well as surrendering his own WBO and The Ring magazine titles to the undefeated, Florida-based Cuban. Like Darchinyan, Donaire knows a win in Texas puts him right back in the big fight title mix.
Armenian Vic “Raging Bull” Darchinyan enters the ring at 39-5-1 (28) in 45 bouts. Since losing his first world title to Donaire, he has gone 11-4-1 in 16 bouts. During this time, he has been in and around the world title scene in the flyweight, bantamweight and super bantamweight title picture. He has won and lost the IBF, WBC, and WBA super flyweight titles as well as the IBO bantamweight title. Even more impressive is that 14 of the 16 fights were challenging for or defending a major world title. Thought 2-2 in his last four bouts, two of them were world title challenges, (WBC and WBA bantamweight title shots) in which he suffered distance losses. His other most recent loss, two fights previous, was a very close, split decision distance loss to then undefeated (21-0-1) Mexican star Abner Mares. Heading into this fight with Donaire, Vic is coming off a fourth round TKO win over Javier Gallo in Laredo, Texas. What the unorthodox, wide-swinging Australian resident lacks in polish, he more than makes up for in grit, a wealth of world title experience, toughness, fierce determination and self-belief. However, at 37 years of age, the recent Top Rank Promotions signee knows his time in the spotlight at the big dance won’t last forever so he will be looking to deliver a Texas-sized performance.
Look for Donaire to work off his speed and striking jab to keep the charging bull at a distance while he looks to find a spot for his fight-ending right hand. Look for the never-say-die Darchinyan to try to swarm, crowd and rough up his taller foe looking to scrap, scrape and claw his way into the winners circle. Both fighters know this bout sets the table for the title buffet to follow and that should make for some great, November featherweight fire in the “Lone Star State.”
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